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September is Self-Improvement Month

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September, the beautiful month that marks the beginning of autumn.

As temperatures start to drop, leaves change, and begin to fall, the month of September, also known as “self-improvement month”, encourages us to take advice from the trees and shed things in our own lives that no longer serve us. It is time to reflect, set new goals, and spend time with the people you love most (including yourself). At Search Wizards, we are proud to be a fully remote staffing company. This affords us more time to be attentive in the areas of life that are often overlooked. However, with this power comes great responsibility.

It’s an understatement to say that life can get overwhelming, leaving you little to no time to take care of the most important person in your life, you! We want to take advantage of self-improvement month and use this opportunity to stress the importance of taking the time to analyze yourself, your relationships, as well as your personal and professional life. There is always room for improvement, even as adults we are constantly growing and changing, along with our values, beliefs, and priorities. As evolutionary beings, we must consistently reassess ourselves and work to understand our current goals so we can acknowledge the steps necessary to reach them.

It sounds a bit daunting, but self-improvement doesn’t always mean major lifestyle changes, the simplest differences can make the biggest impact on one’s life. Listed below are a few small changes you can implement as you begin your journey to unlocking your fullest potential.

Set your alarm earlier.

Consider waking up at an earlier time. Mornings are tough for most of us but waking up earlier has so many incredible benefits besides seeing the sun rise!

More time to yourself. You will feel and be so much more productive with the extra quiet hours you added back to your life. Waking earlier gives you time to relax, sip your coffee, and make a nice breakfast all before you even have to begin thinking about the work that awaits you. Not to mention, because of all you were able to accomplish before starting the day, you will be much better prepared to focus on the tasks at hand. The peace and quiet at the beginning of the day is so worth missing those few extra minutes of shut-eye.

Don’t take our word for it, listen to science, which has shown that sleeping too much can actually make you more tired which impairs your alertness and concentration. Waking up earlier increases the speed at which adenosine is accumulated and released in the body. Adenosine is a neurotransmitter that restricts neuron activity, which is what humans feel when we get “sleepy.” So essentially, if you wake up earlier in the morning the body will naturally reciprocate releasing adenosine making it easier to fall asleep when it gets dark.

Create a schedule.

A general routine creates stability, improving mental and physical health, softening feelings of stress or anxiety. Specifically, when it comes to sleeping, keeping a consistent sleep and wake schedule regulates your circadian rhythm which affects all aspects of your well-being. Circadian rhythm is the internal body clock that dictates when you sleep and when you wake up over a 24-hour time period. When it’s out of alignment, there is an increased risk for obesity, cardiovascular diseases, cancer as well as several other mental and physical obstacles. In order to reset your circadian rhythm and be the best functioning version of yourself possible, create a schedule. It is important to be realistic, intentional, and consistent when creating a new or changing an existing schedule.

Limit screen time.

Technological advancements and societal changes are a detriment to our circadian rhythms, social lives, and attention spans. The artificial lighting and small beacons of blue light negatively affect us. While it is not realistic, in our modern lives, to stay off of technology completely, we can regulate the amount of both artificial and natural light we receive on a daily basis.

Make an effort to get natural sunlight throughout your day and stay away from technology at least 1-2 hours before bed. Limiting screen time is one of the best ways to become a more conscious and focused person. Whether we realize it or not, most of us have a real dependency to our devices, after all, there is an app for everything. Break the cycle. Break the mold.

Try something new.

Attempt to step outside your comfort zone by trying something new, even if it’s just switching up your morning cold brew for something warmer. Although schedules, as said previously, are essential for our mental and physical well-being, sometimes our routines can get to be monotonous and mundane. Finding a new activity or hobby to fill up your free time is exciting and gives you something to look forward to! It’s easy to habitually sit on the couch after a long day but having leisurely activities is a great way to stay stimulated and constantly be improving yourself.
There are several ways to challenge yourself and improve different aspects of life. If you are struggling to identify an activity that resonates with you, here are some ideas:

Start reading a book.

Reading feeds the soul, not only does it help improve your memory and focus but benefits your communication skills. Reading has been proven to lower stress and could even make you live longer. According to one study, individuals who read for roughly 30 minutes a day are 23% more likely to outlive those who don’t.

Begin journaling.

The simple act of writing down your thoughts and feelings helps you understand your emotions better. Taking a moment of your time to write thoughtfully can improve your relationship with yourself alleviating feelings of stress, depression, and anxiety. Journaling can also benefit your creativity and communication skills benefitting your future writing. It is important to remember to focus on the content rather than the grammar while journaling.

Get creative.

Any forms of artistic expression are great to give a try. Have some fun, get messy, and embrace your inner artist! There are several different forms and mediums that can be used to express any emotion you are feeling. Even if you doubt your skills, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

Take up a new instrument.

Not only will you impress all your friends, but learning how to play an instrument also stimulates the brain cells which improves memory and abstract reasoning skills. Musical instruments require the use of both the right and left sides of the brain simultaneously which physically increases the corpus callosum, the huge lump of nerves connecting the two sides of the brain. The increased activity of the corpus callosum helps transfer motor, sensory, and cognitive information between the brain hemispheres making it easier to control behaviors, make decisions, and problem solve.

Explore your city.

Challenge yourself to do something new once a week in the place you call home. Treat your town like a tourist and investigate the most popular areas around you. Many of us get caught up in our daily lives and forget to appreciate the beauty that surrounds us.

Hoping this article inspired you to take yourself into consideration this month and every day hereafter. There are so many amazing benefits we can reap if we are intentional about our time and energy.



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